The 85th session of the senate of the Associated Students of the University of Nevada kicked off on Wednesday, April 12, with President Noah Teixeira and Vice President Sebastian Atienza taking the oaths of office in the Joe Crowley Student Union Ballrooms in front of the new senate. The Speaker, Speaker Pro Tempore and Parliamentarian were then nominated and elected.
Speaker, senate officers elected
Hannah Jackson, who was elected the College of Education senator for the second year in a row, was nominated for Speaker of the senate by Sen. Narinder Mall from the College of Engineering. Sen. Zach Mah from the College of Business nominated Sen. Anthony Martinez from the College of Liberal Arts for Speaker, but he did not accept the nomination.
However, Sen. Martinez was nominated again for Speaker Pro Tempore by Sen. Cammie Lee from the Interdisciplinary Program. This time he did accept. Sen. Mall nominated himself for the position as well. After giving their presentations and the senate discussed it, Sen. Martinez was elected Speaker Pro Tempore.
Sen. Ryan Becker from the College of Health Sciences nominated Sen. Connor Billman from the College of Agriculture, Biotechnology and Natural Resources for Parliamentarian. He ran uncontested and was elected.
Pronouns added to senate rules
Sen. Nicole Flangas from the College of Liberal Arts denied adopting the rules of the senate because she did not believe the he/him/himself/she/her/herself pronouns represented everyone in the university the senate represents.
“In today’s society, we use the singular pronoun ‘they’ to reference gender neutral and gender queer people, so essentially in our rules of the senate, they don’t have a place at our table to speak because we don’t ever reference them by pronoun,” Flangas said.
She created a motion to add them/they/themselves pronouns to the rules of the senate in order to be more inclusive, which was seconded by Sen. Becker and passed unanimously. The rules were then adopted.
Two committee chairs remain open
The senate must fill each of their six committees with a committee chair and five to nine other senators. Each senator must sit on at least two committees.
Sen. Brennan Sullivan from the College of Agriculture, Biotechnology and Natural Resources was nominated for the Academics Committee Chair. However, after Sen. Sullivan’s speech, the senate did not feel he knew enough about the committee to take on the position, and he was not elected. Sen. Haydon Cook from the College of Health Sciences was nominated for the Public Affairs Committee Chair. The senate decided not to elect him as well. Both senators can be re-nominated for the positions at the next meeting, but for now, those committees remain open.
Sen. Justin Kuykendall from the College of Business was elected the Budget and Finance Committee Chair, Sen. Flangas was elected the Civic Engagement Committee Chair, Sen. Austin Thummel from the College of Business was elected Government Operations Committee Chair and Sen. Derek Bussman from the College of Liberal Arts was elected University Affairs Committee Chair.